Monday, September 28, 2009

Valkyrie Voyage

The yarn has arrived, and the next project is off and going. Yes, I am still knitting the lovely hazy shawl, it is my knitting while hair on fire project.

It is the Valkyrie Vest by Lisa Shroyer in the new Interweave Knits Weekend magazine. The project (if you know it) is exactly like that pictured in the issue, not my norm but it is what it is. Youknowwho will get the vest and when the yarn options were looked at I went with LB Collection Organic Yarn in avocado.

I like the yarn very much, it knits into a very nice fabric, the texture is interesting and there is a play of sheen/flat that I like a lot. Not splitty at all, I'd agree with the Lion that this is a nice luxury organic yarn.

I was knitting away (watching football) and noticed that I had been pretty stupid. (Imagine!) After the ribbing on the back I had taken off on the wrong set of cable patterning, duh! I had to frog back to the ribbing (bye bye 4 inches!) and begin again with the correct pattern. The up side is when I get to the next set of cables I will be good to go honey!

I'm off work today (yay) and in addition to the project of going to the storage unit to pick up fall/winter clothes and swap out the closet (it is suddenly fall here!!!) I will finish the needle embroidery on the Ravenna Satchel. I decided to use a center separating zipper on the top of this large bag to keep it closed and help with structure so I picked that up over the weekend. Getting the needle felting DONE will hopefully spur me on to assembly and lining. I keep my fingers crossed that it will work out and be something I love.

On the bridal front, sad but true, I have yet another weekend with no bride with sticks!!!!! I've not been on the contract the past few weeks, which is nice--- but no knitting photos. I was on the contract yesterday but the bride kind of made me crazy and I never even posed her up. Maybe next week?

Friday, September 25, 2009

Cautiously Optomistic?

After a first pass at the needle felting (with MUCH more to come) I am cautiously optomistic that the satchel won't look completely crappy. Maybe partially, but not completely!!!

Onward I go. It is a large piece with a lot of details, and of course the details are what makes the bag look so great. I do a little bit at a time and move on.

New yarn expected to deliver today! YAY! Nothing like the promise of a new project to make a knitter smile!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Ravenna Mulling

I can't give up on it, I just can't. After much knitting, and sitting, and aging, and still wanting the finished (gorgeous from others) Ravenna Satchel, I plug on. This morning I didn't like it much better than I did when it was blocking. I looked online at other satchels at this phase and some looked pretty oooookey too.

I shall shave------------ and there are a couple of holes that I will fix (blech), and then I will steam block as the shape is less than perfection.

I am hoping that when I needle felt it becomes a lovely beautiful wonderful thing. Or something like it. Right now it looks very blobby because the leaf stems are not all pretty and swirly, and the low contrast will definitely benefit from a bit of high and low lights.

Work is NUTS right now so I may not get to this as quickly as I would like. So it goes.

I have managed a few inches on the wrap, a lovely little de-stressing project. I have a wedding where I actually get to go be a GUEST the end of October, it would surely be lovely if it were wearable.

Get Knittin'

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Ravenna----- OFF the needles

Ravenna Satchel:
OFF the needles
Felting as we speak

First impression:


Now I understand it still needs to be shaved, needle felted, assembled, lined and handle-ized.

But right now, NOT a happy knitter.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


What I needed, yearned for, coveted was a lovely new take-a-long project. Currently I have the seaming to do on the eggplant Nimbus, and the last 6 rows of the Ravenna Satchel. Neither of which are terribly portable or which allow me to dash off a row or two when on the phone, waiting on an upload, or while pacing the studio floor. (Which sadly, I do!)

To the rescue is the Everyday Wrap byJulie Weisenberger. Simple but lovely and all of the different wraps from creative women on Ravelry have inspired me for sure!

Off I went (to Knitorious) to search for some yummy yarn thinking I'd choose some Kidsilk Haze which is called for in the pattern. Arriving in Knit Heaven the colors weren't exactly what I wanted but there were some great look/feel alike options. I chose GGH Kid Melange in a wonderful camel with some tonations.

After a few rows where I must have been daydreaming---- working the wrap in garter and not the prescribed stockinette------- it did indeed make a difference and a big one. So starting over I have a few inches on the needles.

Is that knitted fabric not the most delish? SOOOOOOO soft! The camel should go with everything and prove to be a most happy wrap.

Did you notice that I'm using bamboo straights? I almost never knit without my Denise's, these work very well and provide some 'grab'.

After knitting with so much chunkier yarn lately this happy fluff feels like knitting spiderwebs!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


So with Lexical finished completely (the last hemming stitch went on last night at knit group) the WORD is TIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIGHT. You see I knit it in a size smaller, you know, to provide weight loss inspiration. My weight has crept back up and it is time for it to GO! I knew that knitting a great sweater in a smaller size would provide a bit more kick in the land of pants a plenty!

Tight is an understatement. I hadn't had it on and when I slipped it on you could hear the knitters thoughts. ACK was kind. Coming home and looking in the mirror I see that yes, blocking will help but less of me will help more.

I've lost 8.8 to date and others need to join their friends in rapid succession. I'm on it!

The funniest thing is one of the things I tell my brides at the top of the list, always with most emphasis is NEVER buy a gown thinking you will lose weight to fit it. It often doesn't work and what you're left with is a poorly fitting white frock of splendor that makes you end up with photos of yourself with all sorts of unhappy crap hanging out in ugly rolls that have now been captured for all time. ("Mom, why does your wedding dress make you look like you have four boobs???")

I'm hoping that Lexical has its time to shine without those uber tight sleeves and the gaposis in the front. It would be nice after all to USE those buttons! :)

Okay, I'm lacing up my shoes now. Here I go.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Lexical 99.9% FINISHED!

Finished, finito, yes indeed!

Lexical is off the needles and needs only to have the collar turned under and the hem turned up as well as buttons before the blocking. YAY!

It looks a little funny with the hem not folded under nice and flat and the collar looks crazy standing up double height! You can see that the buttons are just marked and not attached yet. I'm wondering if I want to use black thread or yarn? On some yarns using thread can actually cut the yarn it is sewn into so maybe I will experiment with both methods using a little swatch. (I don't have an original swatch, remember it worked out to swatch and make the pocket linings at the same time).

I would have had it done weeks earlier but puttered a bit with the Eggplant Nimbus (next to be seamed) and the Mesh Scarflet.

All in all I'm really pleased with it! I added about an inch and a half to the length but that is the only mod. I love the yarn, the subtle shine is just enough, definitely not too too at all. My only complaint was using the yarn (Lustra) in the seaming. I do like to use the same yarn in the project to assemble the bits and had plenty of Lustra left over to seam. I found that the long length of yarn necessary to seam tended to pull apart, probably due to the repeated pulling through as the yarn in that fat needle wandered through. I had to 'spit splice' a few times on every length. Normally, I wet block the pieces of my sweaters as they come together, for this one I'll block it finished and flat.

On a note of extremely distant similarity (thinking of Berroco projects)---------- congratulations to THE Norah Gaughan who was married last weekend! Many blessings Norah! (How I would have love to have Wrangled you for a bride!)

Labor Day is over, does this mean that the march to fall starts in earnest? It just might be okay, I have some great new sweaters at the ready! ;)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

May You Rest David

My cousin's husband David passed away, it is a kind of sad and kind of okay thing. David was of German decent---- he was so strong, so kind, so brave. He was diagnosed with cancer 2 years ago and has fought the hardest fight I have EVER seen. Remarkable really. He NEVER complained, when the chemo and/or radiation got to him you were unaware. When the soles of his feet blistered so bad he could barely walk he kept up with things around the house and yard. He was never less than funny and always so compassionate. He was love and OH did he love his grandkids. David's last days were nasty, cancer is a horrid beast at the end. It was awful and I'm so glad it is over for him. His wife Paula is a fabulous woman. She sews, crochets, can craft anything that moves and can do more on a shoestring than just about anyone I have ever known. This whole struggle has been so hard on her and yet she was always strong. Always. I tell her now what I have told her always, that she is the toughest old bird in the world. Now that David is gone she says she feels almost better, knowing the ugly end is over and that she has stopped a two year free fall that took her breath away. Now she can get her feet under her and move on.

May you find rest and peace David. We'll all miss you!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Nimbus Blocking

Nimbus is finished and blocking! Only the assembly left to go! I would have finished it a day earlier but I ran out of the eggplant yarn three rows from the finish in the car yesterday on the way to the fair.

To add major irritation I had picked up a ball of merlot colored yarn and some double points to start work on the Eyelet Cap from the current Vogue Knits.

Unhappily I soon discovered my set of dpi's (cute orange colored plastic ones) were not nearly sharp enough to handle k2tog's and easy increases. Grouch and grumble, the rest of the trip was spent watching cows go by the window. The original design uses possum yarn, I will not be for oh so many reasons.

The fair was great fun, I especially liked watching the talent and creativity of the sand artists. They had finished this first tier in the first three days of the fair and have 3 more tiers left of their sand sculpture. Lucky for them the forecast is sunny!

The fair recap goes like this:
corn dog- 1
knitting exhibit- poooooooooooooooor
icy cold beer- 1
quilts at exhibit-pooooooooooooooooooor
bbq sandwich- 1
sweet tea- 1
harness racing- so much fun! (I picked the winner of race one, my horse Chiffon Lady came in to win and my $2 bet became $31!)
black walnut taffy----------- happiness

My daughter arrives from her 14 hour drive this evening and will be staying with us until she gets her feet on the ground. I have great hopes and if you can think a good thought or two it would be greatly appreciated!